‘True Detective’ Season 1 Episode 7 Recap: “After You’ve Gone”

By March 3, 2014

After watching (fast forwarding) the Oscars and viewing Matthew McConaughey’s much-deserved win, it felt even more fitting to jump into episode 7 of “True Detective.” And here’s your weekly disclaimer: SPOILERS AHEAD! SPOILERS AHEAD! SPOILERS AHEAD! This is the internet talking! Tread lightly…

Episode 7 “After You’ve Gone” takes up with Rust and Marty at a bar playing catch up. It’s been 10 years since the two have sat in the same room together and time hasn’t been very nice on either of them. Cohle tells him he’s been living in Alaska and Marty has been running his own private investigator company. Rust cuts to the chase and tells Hart their business is unfinished and the case from all those years ago is still open. Rust needs Marty’s help, and his response is so eloquently put:

If you were drowning, I’d throw you a f*cking barbell. Why would I ever help you?

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The hurt from the Maggie fiasco a decade earlier is still there. Marty goes to leave but Rustin Cohle pushes the issue, stating he has “a debt.” The fact here is, they both do. Unfinished business of this nature can be quite haunting. There may be one girl saved from the horrid events in ’95 but per the evidence at hand, many more children have gone missing. Something needs to be done.

Rust coerces Marty to come with him to his storage unit to “see what he’s got.” Hart comes with some reservations (and a .38), but instead of finding himself walking into a trap, he is exposed to Rustin Cohle’s continued work in tracking down The Yellow King, The Spaghetti Monster and Carcosa. Hell, I’m sure Carrie Matheson would be proud.

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Rust begins catching Hart up to speed about the work he’s been doing. He even alludes to his own possible insanity regarding this research. He tells Marty about one of Marie Fontenot’s former classmates named Toby from one of Tuttle’s many schools. Rust caught up with this dude, who was sporting some rather lovely cross-dressing attire, at a bar some years back. And much to our surprise (not really), the man accounts for some strange and lewd behavior done to the children back when he was a student at the school. There’s mention of the man with the scars. This leads Rust to break into Tuttle’s homes in Shreveport and Baton Rouge in search of evidence. What he finds are some pictures and a video tape in a safe. The pictures show children blindfolded in a field with antlers on their head. The video reveals much worse.

The video in question is what you’d refer to as a snuff film. Its grainy black and white footage shows Martin Hart, now armed with a flask, what exactly happened to Marie Fontenot. We don’t see much of what’s on the tape but Marty’s reaction is enough to tell the audience that really bad things happened. It’s this one piece of evidence that convinces Marty to partner back up with Rust.

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It’s 2012 and the band is back together. Except now, neither man is on the force, so resources are not as easy to come by. The main focus is to track down the man with the scars. First on the agenda, however, Martin Hart visits his ex-wife Maggie. He asks her how everyone is and it feels very much like he’s checking in and saying goodbye to her. She even asks if this is the case, but he does not answer.

The two put up stakes at Hart’s investigative firm and begin poring through the mostly old evidence they have. Rust soon asks Hart about his life and the two find they both have something in common…

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…they lead boring and lonely lives.

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In an attempt gain further access to the case files from 1995, Hart visits his old stomping grounds and coerces an old coworker with a 12 year Macallan and a story about true crime writing classes in order to grant entry to the file room. Hart is now doing the work Cohle did all those years ago, and he has to dig through a room full of boxes to get to the missing persons reports to help unlock the key in finding the tall scarred man. They end up tracking down another Ledoux boy, this one being a cousin of the man they killed in 1995. Although clean, this Ledoux ends up recounting one instance in which he too met the man with the scars. Rust and Marty are on the right path.

And with that, the two are back in the car like old times. You can see the apprehension on Rust’s face regarding their next destination.

I don’t like this place. Everything grows in the wrong direction.

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Their next lead was found by Marty through tax records connected with Tuttle’s estate. Cohle and Hart enter the home of a woman named Dolores in search of further information. Rust asks a few questions regarding her work for Sam Tuttle’s estate. Dolores lets us in on the detail of Sam Tuttle’s many children he fathered with a multitude of different women.

We get a hint that the scarred man they are hunting is Sam Tuttle’s grandson who was abused by his own father – hence the scars. And upon further pressing by Rust, she gives out the name Childress as being the man’s possible last name. Rust shows her the drawings in his “taxman” book of the devil traps and the like.

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This triggers something in the woman. Something comes alive in her. Wide-eyed and excited, Dolores starts babbling about some crazy-sounding sh*t:

You know Carcosa? Him who eats time. His robe is a wind of invisible voices. Rejoice! Death is not the end! Rejoice! Death is not the end!

At this point, Delores’ granddaughter decides the former detectives’ time in her house has run its course and she kicks the guys to the curb. Before they leave, she points to her grandmother’s dementia and demands money to keep quiet, but Rust and Marty know the old woman’s words point them further in the right direction. And down that dark path they continue.

Their next lead is Steve Garaci, one of the old sheriffs they talked with about Marie Fontenot’s disappearance. Marty calls him up and the two old friends go out for a nice game of golf. As Marty presses Garaci about the Fontenot case, it quickly adds up in his head that Sheriff Steve here is definitely lying. This nut may be a tough one to crack as the only one who can arrest a Sheriff is a Governor. Hart tried it his way and failed. So later, the two enjoy a nice beer with what looks like plans to get some fishing done. Instead, Marty brings up the Fontenot girl again and this time is joined by an armed and determined-looking Cohle. It looks like Sheriff Steve Garaci is about to be on the wrong end of a Rustin Cohle interrogation – car battery, jumper cables and all!

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We cut to Detectives Maynard Gilbough and Thomas Papania as they are driving down a lone road in search of the run down church Rust described in their interview with him. Convinced they are lost, the two stop and ask a man on the side of the road of its location. Lo and behold, it’s the same lawnmower man Cohle briefly spoke to outside the closed down Tuttle school. He advises the detectives that the church was torn down and then gives them directions to get back to the freeway. They drive off, not giving him a second thought.

This is where the episode ends. However, this guy has got to be The Spaghetti Monster right? I’m not sure I saw any scars on his creepy mug but that beard along with the green earmuffs he wears when riding that mower really have my suspicions on high alert. (Editor’s note: I thought I saw some scarring, but tell us in the comments if you noticed it or not!)

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I know I’m not the only one on the internet who feels this way!

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We have one more episode to go before the glory that is Season 1 of “True Detective” comes to an end. What do you think? Is this the Childress boy Miss Dolores was referring to? If so, who is The Yellow King? What is Carcosa? You’ve got your theories and I want to hear em! Shout ’em at me below!

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Aside from throwing words onto your screen here, he has written for the likes of FEARnet, Examiner, Dread Central and MTV Movies Blog. And yes, he was Percy on VR Troopers.
  • Bob Maier

    When they show Marty eating his TV dinner alone, in the mirror behind him you can see a few scenes of a western. Anybody recognize it?